Tuesday, August 19, 2014

For want of prosecution, a 2009 assault against a CF recruit goes unpunished.

Recruit training in the Canadian military
On August 13, 2014 the Canadian [French-speaking] media reported on the results of an interview aired the same day with James Robichaud who complained of having been assaulted in October 2009 by one of his instructors during recruit training. The assault  left him with a host of permanent physical injuries to his feet, ankles, Achilles tendons, calf muscles, both knees and left shoulder. Robichaud explained that the assault, which was thoroughly investigated by the military police, has yet to result in concrete action by the Director of Military Prosecutions which has failed to also keep him informed as to the reason(s) for such a long delay.

Robichaud detailed how he was subject to threats and a continuous stream of physical abuse.  He also noted that his several reports of physical and verbal abuse to the leadership cadre of the Recruit School were unheeded.  Discharged on medical grounds in April 2012, a military police investigation was only initiated after his counsel wrote to the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff detailing the abuse and violence suffered by Robichaud and requesting a criminal investigation.  After gathering evidence from approximately 70 witnesses, in the Fall 2013 the Military Police recommended to the Director of Military Prosecutions that criminal charges be laid against the instructor. 

However, for reasons unknown, almost five years after the physical abuse, harassment and torment was inflicted on Robichaud, the Canadian Director Military Prosecution, Office of the Judge Advocate General,  has yet to prefer the charges against the alleged offender so that he may be tried by court martial. 

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